Set a resolution you have a hope of actually achieving this New Year.
As the new year approaches, we all have resolutions in mind but many of the most common ones are broken, including the ventures to lose weight, get fit, stop bad habits like smoking and even learn a new skill.
Here are 4 things to keep in mind when crafting your resolution, giving yourself the best chance to make it one you’ll actually keep.
- Keep them SMART
Keep your objectives SMART, an acronym which stands for Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Realistic and Time-bound. So, when you jot down your resolution, see if you can alter it to better fit within these criteria.
If your plan is to shed the kilos, exactly how much do you plan to lose, and in what time frame? Is this a realistic feat? Keeping resolutions specific rather than vague will allow you to realise when you’ve actually achieved your goal and therefore avoid getting disheartened, sometimes even running the risk of giving up completely.
- Hold yourself accountable
The journey towards your goal doesn’t need to be travelled alone. Share your resolution with someone close to you, like a family member or best friend. They can help you ensure you stick to your plan, providing encouragement when you fall into that inevitable slump, or even move that cigarette or piece of chocolate out of your reach.
- Expect failure
Nobody’s perfect and especially in the case of planning for big lifestyle changes, you should expect times when you’ll fall off the wagon – especially if your willpower isn’t made of steel. If your plans account for failure, it will be easier to pick yourself up, brush yourself off and re-commit to achieving your resolution; so those off-days will be contained to momentary lapses of will.
- Reward your milestone
Changing an aspect of your life, as well as learning or breaking a habit, is no short-term feat and will take time to fully integrate into your lifestyle. Instead of waiting until you’ve completely achieved your goal, celebrate the small milestones along the way, whether it’s a shopping spree for every 5kgs lost, or enjoying a night on the town for every 2 weeks without a cigarette.
This will not only reward you for your efforts, but will encourage you to power on long term and make the habit one you can commit to for life.